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pashopper

Member Since 2008

188
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 42 reviews
  • 264 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 6 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
2
FOLLOWERS
9

  • Short Stories by Saki

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By H. H. Munro
    • Narrated By Frederick Davidson, Nadia May
    Overall
    (35)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    Hector Munro, writing under the pseudonym of Saki, is justly renowned for his urbane and witty short stories. His eccentric characters, humorous dialogue and engaging domestic situations all reveal a penetrating and sometimes disturbing insight into human nature. As a quixotic tour guide, Saki leads the reader from garden party to pig sty to political convention with the ease of one who is intimately familiar with the cares and foibles of the human condition, showing us this vista of life through the well tempered lens of his gentle, British irony. In this definitive collection of stories we can browse and sightsee at our leisure, cross borders of fresh insight, admire and enjoy each whimsical tale as we journey through the imaginative landscape of a truly artful writer.

    pashopper says: "Wonderful collection for Saki fans"
    "Wonderful collection for Saki fans"
    Overall

    I would have given this 5 stars but for the fact that the memory of an old record from the public library I listened to as a child is hard to live up to. The narrators here are very good though. If you are not familiar with Saki writings - then this is an excellent collection for those who love the subtle wit and dry British humor that was his style (in order to appreciate it fully). Also included in this book are a few stories that were not meant to be comedic. He was a master of what he did and I enjoyed this audio very much.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • The Way of Kings: Book One of The Stormlight Archive

    • UNABRIDGED (45 hrs and 37 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By Kate Reading, Michael Kramer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9681)
    Performance
    (7192)
    Story
    (7240)

    Roshar is a world of stone and storms. Uncanny tempests of incredible power sweep across the rocky terrain so frequently that they have shaped ecology and civilization alike. Animals hide in shells, trees pull in branches, and grass retracts into the soilless ground. Cities are built only where the topography offers shelter. It has been centuries since the fall of the ten consecrated orders known as the Knights Radiant, but their Shardblades and Shardplate remain: mystical swords and suits of armor.

    Jason says: "Brandon's Best Work Yet"
    "Worth the credits * and * the hangover."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Yeah, I meant hangover. This is incredibly well written, and it is so long, that you start to get used to having this great listen available. You get so used to it (with its 7 part download) that it is a bit dependency forming. You get a bit of a buzz. The more the complicated story with its many many characters develops and the more you start to understand what is going on and who the heroes are going to be and how the magic works...the more enjoyable it gets - and the farther you drop when it is over.
    But not over. Ouch.
    With book 2 not even in sight for 2013... what are you supposed to do until whenever 'then' is?
    But still. I would do it again... (I probably will as part of the withdrawal)

    The story is mostly on the battlefield - which I don't usually go for much- but this author writes like no other. Even the beginning of the chapters - where other authors quote of bit Shakespeare or something just as old to add a bit of gravitas - Brandon Sanderson creates his own ancient text to quote. And it ends up being clues to a slowing revealed mystery. 5 star stuff. If you want something lighter, and shorter, I suggest getting Sanderson's Alcatraz series which is excellently narrated and laugh out loud fun for any age.
    Still, the emotional investment in this Stormlight Archive is an experience well worth the credits, the time, and (sadly) the wait for the next one.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Warbreaker

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 46 mins)
    • By Brandon Sanderson
    • Narrated By James Yaegashi
    Overall
    (2754)
    Performance
    (1937)
    Story
    (1947)

    An author whose previous, wildly successful novels have earned him a reputation as fantasy's master of magic, Brandon Sanderson continues to dazzle audiences with this tale of princesses and gods. In this extraordinary world, those who attain glory return as gods. And those who can master the essence known as breath can perform the most wondrous miracles - or unleash the most devastating havoc.

    Robert says: "What's Your god like?"
    "Worth putting up with a mediocre narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This one is like a trilogy all in one book, it is so long and well developed. But I hope there will be a sequel anyway.
    The magic is unique and the characters are diverse and interesting - though I confess it took a chapter or two for me to really be into the storyline - after that I was hooked. The end gives excellent closure - something I think all books should give.
    Insulting a narrator's performance is something I usually don't do. Unfortunately this narrator gives a 1980's surfer dude cadence to several key characters (which doesn't fit). His in between the dialogue voice is very pleasant though.
    * Still worth a credit for the many hours of high quality fiction.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • A Christmas Carol: A Signature Performance by Tim Curry

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Charles Dickens
    • Narrated By Tim Curry
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3975)
    Performance
    (1791)
    Story
    (1788)

    A Signature Performance: Tim Curry rescues Charles Dickens from the jaws of Disney with his one-of-a-kind performance of the treasured classic. Our listeners loved this version so much that it inspired our whole line of Signature Classics.

    Nanci says: "Superb story and reading!"
    "Wonderful rendition from a talented narrator"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This will be the third year I have listened to this during the holiday season. The original prose by Dickens is a refreshing delight to the modern mind - and the modern narrator shows amazing versatility through all the character voices. There are many television and movie versions of this story to enjoy but, as with most great literature, nothing beats the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Betty MacDonald
    • Narrated By Karen White
    Overall
    (16)
    Performance
    (14)
    Story
    (13)

    Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle loves everyone, and everyone loves her right back. The Children love her because she is lots of fun. Their parents love her because she can cure children of absolutely any bad habit. The treatments are unusual, but they work! Who better than a pig, for instance, to teach a piggy little boy table manners? And what better way to cure the rainy-day "waddle-I-do's" than hunt for pirate treasure in Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's upside-down house?

    pashopper says: "Family road trip necessity"
    "Family road trip necessity"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I had two children (age 5 and 7) in the car for a 10 hour round trip. This audiobook was the saving grace (saving sanity) of the day. The narrator's voice is pleasant to adult ears and completely captivating to the children's. They loved it so much they requested it over the portable DVD on the way home. Really. It also kept their attention so well we even had less rest-stop requests. - but it gets better - Since the story is actually about children behaving badly and then learning to be good through Mrs. Piggle Wiggle - my children were careful not to behave badly. Pure magic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Gray Wolf Throne: A Seven Realms Novel, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 59 mins)
    • By Cinda Williams Chima
    • Narrated By Carol Monda
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (210)
    Performance
    (190)
    Story
    (191)

    New York Times best-selling author Cinda Williams Chima is well known for her Seven Realms fantasy series. When commoner Han Alister finds his friend Rebecca on the edge of death, saving her life becomes his number one priority. Then he learns that Rebecca is really Raisa ana’Marianna, heir to the Queendom of the Fells, and he’s devastated - for more than one reason. But he’ll have to ignore his personal feelings to fulfill a promise he made long ago.

    pashopper says: "Third in the "trilogy" Not the end."
    "Third in the "trilogy" Not the end."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    So Amazon.com has been calling this series a trilogy, it's not. No closure here. But that's actually ok. Turns out this is the best one yet (though I think the 4th book should be it). The first book, The Demon King, was a slow builder as the foundations of the characters, their past, and their environments was filled out by the author with care. The second book, The Exiled Queen, had more happening. But this third one is full of action driving the story forward at a much quicker pace. There are many exciting developments and I was caught by surprise at the sudden announcement of the narrator saying, "The End." I should have noticed the subtle difference in the publisher description as a 'seven realms novel' instead of 3rd in a trilogy. But the listening hours were long enough and the story definitely engaging enough that I wasn't too put out. The narrator is limited in her range of believable male voices but is still enjoyable. I will be getting the next one... (I don't repeat story synopsis in a review since that is found in the book description already, but, since no ratings are given it should be said that all 3 so far have been completely 'clean' of adult content for anyone who is concerned about that)

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Snuff

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Terry Pratchett
    • Narrated By Stephen Briggs
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1671)
    Performance
    (1480)
    Story
    (1490)

    Sam Vimes is on a well-deserved holiday. But for the commander of the City Watch, a vacation in the country is anything but relaxing. The balls, the teas, the muck - not to mention all that fresh air and birdsong - are more than a bit taxing on a cynical city-born and -bred copper. Yet a policeman will find a crime anywhere if he decides to look hard enough, and it’s not long before a body is discovered, and Sam - out of his jurisdiction, out of his element, and out of bacon sandwiches (thanks to his well-meaning wife) - must rely on his instincts, guile, and street smarts to see justice done.

    Tim says: "Perfect Pratchett"
    "Worth Multiple Listens"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Snuff is packed with action, interesting players, witty lines, thought provoking situations, and enough comedy to lighten the dark moments. This latest Sam Vimes installment is well worth the time and credit. In fact the quality of these books seems to just get better as they go (which is unusual to say the least) . However, it is not necessary to have read the previous ones to enjoy this as a fully stand alone novel. The author always gives a satisfying ending to each one in the series. All the suspense and the cliffhangers are contained and completely brought to fruition within each book. I wish some of my other favorite authors could manage this feat! The character development is also incredible- if you listen to this one first, you might want to then go to the first, much simpler story, "Guards Guards" and work your way through to "Thud", a relisten of "Snuff" and a more fuller appreciation of the growing complexity (and charisma) of one of my favorite Discworld Characters. [for listeners who would like a content rating; some bits of situational violence but nothing inappropriate for 10+]

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • House of Dark Shadows: The Dreamhouse Kings Series, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 50 mins)
    • By Robert Liparulo
    • Narrated By Joshua Swanson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (51)
    Performance
    (28)
    Story
    (28)

    Dream house… or bad dream? When the Kings move from L.A. to a secluded small town, fifteen-year-old Xander is beyond disappointed. He and his friends loved to create amateur films, but the tiny town of Pinedale is the last place a movie buff and future filmmaker wants to land. Xander, David, and Toria are, however, captivated by the many rooms in the old Victorian fixer-upper they moved into—as well as by the heavy woods that surround it.

    pashopper says: "Publisher summed it up"
    "Publisher summed it up"
    Overall

    This book is pretty short, in fact the publisher's description is almost all that happens in it - right up to the end. I suspect that the second book could be the first one you listen to and not be confused. It is written and narrated for a young audience (a magic tree house age group). I recommend listening to the audio sample to see if the overly soft tones of the narrator don't bore you. I gave it 3*s since I did become curious to see what would happen next but it's probably not worth a credit to mature listeners.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Garden Spells

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Sarah Addison Allen
    • Narrated By Susan Ericksen
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (965)
    Performance
    (516)
    Story
    (520)

    The Waverleys have always been a curious family, endowed with peculiar gifts that make them outsiders even in their hometown of Bascom, North Carolina. Even their garden has a reputation, famous for its feisty apple tree that bears prophetic fruit, and its edible flowers, imbued with special powers.

    Generations of Waverleys tended this garden. Their history was in the soil. But so were their futures.

    Together again in the house they grew up in, the Waverley sisters realize they must deal with their common legacy - if they are ever to feel at home in Bascom - or with each other.

    Joihelene says: "I so want to give it 5 stars...!!!!"
    "Easy listening"
    Overall

    Written very much in the style of an Alice Hoffman book, this one has several very enjoyable characters and an interesting story. There is magic and (while it is definitely NOT for the Fantasy Genre) it does lighten up this literary equivalent of a 'chick flick'. The female characters are believable and you come to care about them very quickly. The male characters are a bit 2 dimensional though and serve more as a narrative device than a place in the cast.
    That said, it kept my attention throughout and I did enjoy it. I think it also worth mentioning that nearly all the great books in any genre have some romance in them...

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Witches Incorporated: Rogue Agent, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By K. E. Mills
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    Overall
    (126)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (68)

    It's Gerald Dunwoody's first official government assignment. He's hunting down a deadly saboteur, and time is quickly running out. Old and new enemies combine forces to thwart him. Once again, innocent lives are on the line. He needs his friends. He can't do this alone. But Princess Melissande and Reg have troubles of their own.

    pashopper says: "I keep Re-Listening to this one!"
    "I keep Re-Listening to this one!"
    Overall

    I enjoyed the first book, Accidental Sorcerer, but this one is even better. It is pretty much a guarantee that anyone who liked the first will love this one. The narrator is great, he portrays the characters so well you forget you are listening to only one voice. Though the focus shifts slightly from the main character of the first book to Mellisand, Gerald still plays a large and very interesting part in this one. In fact, it is his character that develops the most by the end of the story. I will definitely get the third one!

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • The Accidental Sorcerer: Rogue Agent, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By K. E. Mills
    • Narrated By Stephen Hoye
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (197)
    Performance
    (80)
    Story
    (81)

    Gerald Dunwoody is a wizard. Just not a particularly good one. He's blown up a factory, lost his job, and there's a chance that he's not really a Third Grade wizard after all. So it's off to New Ottosland to be the new Court Wizard for King Lional. It's a shame that King Lional isn't the vain, self-centered young man he appeared to be. With a princess in danger, a talking bird who can't stay out of trouble, and a kingdom to save, Gerald soon suspects that he might be out of his depth.

    John Williams says: "A good start to a new series"
    "Original and Memorable"
    Overall

    This story is set in a world where wizarding is a normal (though specialized) job. The main character Gerald becomes more 'real' to the reader as the plot progresses from a simple episode to a much more dramatic and involved ending. It is fun and interesting and clean enough for young listeners - but there is plenty of intellectual pondering for the older crowd. The characters are well written and fully fleshed out to become a memorable experience for you. I have listened to this twice - and the sequel is even better and more fun!
    (P.S. I am a big Pratchett fan too, but this is apples and oranges. Take it on its own merits)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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